The demand for reference drugs or so-called comparators is soaring as the volume,size and complexity of clinical trials reach record levels. Under pressure to source necessary quantities of these products within tight timelines and budget constraints, many supply chain managers are opting to go local.Comparators are increasingly used in clinical trials to establish that an investigational drug is more effective than an existing product, a differentiating factor that can be a prerequisite for licensure, formulary listing and healthcare reimbursement. On average, a sponsor spends a total of $50 million on clinical supplies, half of it for comparators, according to the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development.
This growing demand for comparators is causing many supply chain managers to explore available sourcing options. Two out of three polled during a recent webinar by the Fisher Clinical Services team indicated that they have either gone to local markets for sourcing comparators or are considering this as an option for a future trial.
This growing demand for comparators is causing many supply chain managers to explore available sourcing options. This paper examines the fundamentals of local sourcing, including the benefits and challenges of sourcing locally, and the circumstances under which local sourcing can be a sound decision. Recommendations are provided for avoiding common pitfalls in implementing a local sourcing strategy.